Monday, April 21, 2008

to Otter or not

I chose not to race Sea Otter this year. I've been there racing (road and/or mountain) or coaching for the past seven years. Of course, when you don't race, everyone wants to know what's wrong. Nothing's wrong with me or the team, but there's a lot wrong with Sea Otter. I would rather give my registration support ($$$) to a local race (or three) and feel positive about the whole experience. Sea Otter seems to leave a bad taste in too many mouths each year. The event has gotten bigger and bigger each year. Registration fees have increased. Support for racers has decreased. PITA has increased. Accuracy of results has decreased. The length of lines has increased. My desire to participate has decreased. I decided this was the year to finally quit playing the Sea Otter game.

But because it's Sea Otter, we really had to make an appearance. And it's the ideal opportunity to spend some quality time with our sponsors who aren't in the northern california area. So Friday was sponsor day: my teammate, Dana, and I headed down to Monterey for lunch, booth time, sponsor gifts, dinner and drinks, mucho fun.

Jim Wannamaker of Kenda -- one of the most supportive and generous sponsors in the industry!

Linda Elgart of Voler Team Apparel -- not only a fabulous sponsor, but one of my athletic idols. Linda has won national championships in just about every discipline in cycling.

Mattias Presser of Sock Guy -- what a charmer with a little moustache and a little accent to match.

What can I say about Tri-Flow? Velo Girls would not be who we are without their generous support of our team, race, and racing development program. Here you see Brian, Steve Spirko, and the ever-funny Bob Wrona.

This is Mortiz Hoemke from GU -- one of our very first sponsors in 2002!

And this is the lovely Sally Virgin of Simbree Energy Foods -- one of our brand new sponsors for 2008.


chatterbox said...

Yay to our sponsors! They rock!

I'll second your thoughts on the Otter. For a brief second I was thinking I should have gone down and raced (which would have taken a vacation day away from our potential Argentinian adventure in the fall)....but then one of Rick's buddies from work wrote about how the Men's Cat 5 RR was delayed 2 hours!!!! That's just ridiculous! How on earth is anyone supposed to manage logistics, warmup and nutrition for a race that is 2 hours delayed? Talk about a bad taste in the mouth!

mhernandez said...

i'm a fan of the Simbree foods. Tried them out a few weeks ago and was very impressed.

velogirl said...

yeah, Simbree is pretty incredible. she's very green, she's a small business working from a community kitchen -- made in Seattle and Portland.

and the products are wheat and dairy free with is good for me.....and way too yummy!

CyclistRick said...

Some things to love about Sea Otter, but the PITA level has risen to way over threshhold. I'll race two local races for less $$ and have fewer headaches to deal with. Just wish there was another venue for getting access to the Laguna Seca track :-)

lauren said...

cute pics.

i saw a pic of one of the bouncy tents in the in field blown over at the otter.

that was enough for me to be thankful that we hadn't gone.

Denise said...

What is PITA? I know PETA.....

velogirl said...

Denise, PITA = pain in the butt.

chatterbox said...

denise - PITA, in addition to being a tasty flatbread, is an acronym for Pain In The Arse!